Asset condition monitoring of Gympie regional council’s road network

Watson, Liam Douglas (2016) Asset condition monitoring of Gympie regional council’s road network. [USQ Project]

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Gympie Regional Council (GRC) spends between $10M-$15M on roadworks as part of its annual capital works program. Currently, the selection of projects for these programs relies heavily on customer complaints, councillor requests and feedback from GRCs Construction and Maintenance Branch. GRCs Design Service Division has identified a need for this process to include quantifiable asset condition data, giving the project selection process a consistent and impartial foundation. This project seeks to define a process which will result in the collection of road condition data which can then be used to identify road segments in need of capital works.

Road condition assessments seek to provide an indication of the overall condition of the road by identifying and recording defects in the road pavement and surfacing. As road condition is linked to the age of the asset, road segments found with high defect rates, thus approaching the end of their useful life can be programmed in for capital works. The goal is to provide a reliable long term capital works program to ensure optimal distribution of the available funding.

An analysis of the available literature covering road condition assessments was undertaken. This included nationally recognised best-practice manuals by Austroads, to research papers addressing state of the art data collection techniques. GRCs practices regarding road condition assessment were reviewed. This lead to conducting a gap analysis between GRCs existing road inspection procedure and what is currently accepted as best-practice. The above-mentioned research, review and gap analysis provided the platform for the development of draft corporate documents for GRC concerning road condition assessment, including an operational framework.

The framework comprises of an initial assessment phase where the entire sealed road network is screened using road roughness measurement. The roughness data is then used to shortlist a portion of the road network for detailed assessment. There is scope for the detailed assessment phase to be undertaken by GRCs existing inspectors. The framework was developed with a focus on the following findings:

• Quality data must be collected and used; otherwise there will be little confidence in the outputs of the system.

• From a strategic planning standpoint, the condition of a road does not change rapidly. Therefore, frequent inspection cycles are unnecessary and uneconomical.

• The amount of roadworks that can be undertaken is ultimately controlled by the available funding. Therefore, the number of candidate projects is limited by this and the scope of condition inspections should reflect this.

Beyond this project, the next step will be to run a pilot inspection program to test the framework. From there, a process of evaluation and review can be implemented to ensure that GRC benefits from the framework as much as possible.

In conclusion, the establishment of a road condition assessment program for GRC is very much achievable in the short to medium term. This will lead to increased confidence in the outputs of the capital works programming process.

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Item Type: USQ Project
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) Major Civil Engineering project
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Faculty of Health, Engineering and Sciences - School of Civil Engineering and Surveying (1 Jul 2013 - 31 Dec 2021)
Supervisors: Mahmood, Nateque
Date Deposited: 24 Jul 2017 02:13
Last Modified: 24 Jul 2017 02:13
Uncontrolled Keywords: road condition assessments; Gympie Regional Council (GRC); asset condition monitoring; road network; roadworks; funding
Fields of Research (2008): 09 Engineering > 0905 Civil Engineering > 090502 Construction Engineering
Fields of Research (2020): 40 ENGINEERING > 4005 Civil engineering > 400504 Construction engineering

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